Traditionally one of the more expensive destinations to send expatriate staff, a survey has found that the UK is now becoming cheaper for foreign companies.
The MyExpatriate Market Pay survey (published annually by ECA International) states that for the past few years the fall in the value of UK Sterling has meant that for companies outside the country, operating mainly in USD, sending resources to Britain has become around 11% cheaper.
The cost of an average expatriate renumeration package for middle managers being sent to the UK is now £262,900/$384,400.The previous year's survey found that in the year before that there was a drop of 9%, showing a slight slow down over the past year or so.
However, the United Kingdom is far from cheap.
When weighing up renumeration there are many factors that have to be taken into account. As well the salary and benefits (private healthare, relocation training, insurances, schooling for kids, cars, etc) tax is a huge factor in how cheap or expensive a place is to send resources.
The UK still has some of the highest personal tax rates in the world and the second highest cost for typical expatriate benefits.
"The tax element is the most expensive component of an expatriate package in the UK by a considerable margin. Once tax is removed, the UK falls out of the global top five most expensive locations in the world. The cost of providing benefits is also considerable, at around double the salary element due to high expatriate rental accommodation prices." Steven Kilfedder, Production Manager, ECA International.
Take for example countries like Qatar, United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia in the Persian Gulf, They all occupy places near the bottom of the global rankings.
Why? Tax. Or in their case the lack of it. Despite the highest global middle manager expatriate salaries being found in Saudi Arabia and the UAE, employees pay no tax on their salaries or benefits. The total cost is very low therefore by international standards with both sitting in the cheapest six locations in the global rankings.